Hosted Solutions: “Shrink-wrap” Products vs. Customized Solutions
Director of Marketing, VoltDelta
Hosted Solutions for contact centers have been well established in the market — they are here to stay. The
reasons for this are compelling: changing the cost structure from a capital expense to an operation expense;
having the hosted provider manage the hardware, software, licensing and maintenance; leveraging
the experience and expertise of the hosted provider as opposed to hiring personnel — and more.
When implementing hosted solutions,
there typically appears to be two levels
of hosted offerings: pre-prepared “shrink
wrap” applications and completely customized
“built from scratch” solutions.
Each of these has their own distinct pros
and cons that the contact center needs to
evaluate before making a decision on a
hosted solution service provider.
These pre-prepared applications are somewhat
generic but are typically easily implemented;
examples include store locators, survey applications
and CTI integrations to common
CRM packages. These applications are rapidly
deployed and easily integrated with the basic
contact center infrastructure. They can cover
most of the common needs — but rarely
satisfy all requirements and are not easily (or
in some cases not at all) customizable. Smaller
centers are more likely to use these applications
as they are better suited to their needs.
Solutions that are built from the ground up and
tailored to the exact needs of the contact center
are perfect fits and address all current and most
future requirements. They typically involve a
discovery and requirements definition phase,
a development and a testing phase, and then
a roll-out. Solution development will include
selecting multiple technologies and integrating
them into the provider’s platform. While these
solutions are perfect fits the implementation
time is long and the process is expensive; typically
only larger and more sophisticated centers
can have completely customized solutions
developed and deployed for them.
Bringing Together the Best of
Fortunately contact centers don’t have to
choose just between “shrink wrap” applications
and completely customized solutions;
there is a way to get the best of both of these
and to get it without their negative aspects.
The answer is hosted solutions that use a
proven telephony platform that already has a
complete suite of applications integrated into
it. The key is that these applications must be
easily customizable by the hosted solution
provider to exactly fit the current needs of the
contact center and to accept future modifications
to handle future requirements. This
allows for the exact requirement fulfillment
of the completely customized solution but
with the implementation time and expense
of the “shrink wrap” application. This type of
hosted solution provider has the experience to
not only perform the rapid deployment but
also to bring the expertise in customization
to address all the center’s requirements. The
cost, while typically greater than that of the
“shrink wrap” application, is much less than
that of the customized solution and provide
an excellent value considering the costs versus
This hybrid approach bringing together
the best elements of both “shrink wrap”
applications and completely customized
solutions enables contact centers of any size
and complexity to gain access to solutions
that are rapidly deployed, meet their requirements
and to provide all of the benefits of
the hosted, on-demand model.
About VoltDelta Hosted Solutions
VoltDelta Hosted Solutions has announced our
new product suites: OASIS On-Call, the complete
hosted telephony platform; OASIS Voice
Self-Service, the suite of speech automated
solutions, and OASIS Web Client, the solution
set for agent virtualization, productivity and
management. Our new General Manager is
Terry Saeger: [email protected]
Volt Delta Launches OASIS Smart-Station
Volt Delta recently announced OASIS Smart-Station as an addition
to the company’s OASIS contact center suite of products. The
new solution provides contact center agents with full telephony
and media management capabilities, as well as a clear way of
presenting all required applications and services including the use
of individual tabbed views for each individual agent application.
According to VoltDelta (News - Alert), as each call arrives these tabs are automatically
popped and configured ready for use by the agent.
Additionally the company released OASIS Smart-Station for Microsoft
Dynamics CRM, which offers a very rich and flexible CTI (News - Alert) interface
between the OASIS contact center package and the Dynamics CRM
system. The benefits of integrating so closely include the ability to create
an immediate screen pop of the customer’s details on call arrival, based on
either the caller’s telephone number or use of other information that the
customer may have provided to an OASIS self-service speech application.
The Microsoft (News - Alert) Dynamics CRM implementation also exploits
the tabbed views approach to provide a number of additional
screen pops for account-related information and other services.
These could include the automatic screen pop of a separate
browser window for a customer’s Web site, an immediate customer
location with a map and Virtual Earth display based on
the customer’s address and even automatically performing an
Internet search to provide further details.
Designed to be a flexible highly integrated environment for
efficient call handling and customer contact, the new offering
from Volt Delta is available both as an on-premise offering
and also as a hosted service.
– Greg Galitzine is editorial director at TMC (News - Alert).
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